Manchin Isn’t Ruling Out a Presidential Run

( – Democrat Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has already said he won’t be running again in 2024. Does that mean he’s stepping back from politics, though? Maybe not. Manchin has started dropping hints that he’s considering a presidential run — and those hints are getting heavier.

Joe Manchin is an outlier in today’s Democratic Party. He’s in a liberal party but calls himself a moderate or even a conservative. He’s consistently rated as the most right-wing Democrat in the Senate and he’s endorsed Republican candidates in elections. Since President Biden took office, Manchin has seemed increasingly out of place in his party, and in fact, since 2010 he’s put a lot of effort into No Labels, an organization dedicated to non-partisan politics.

Since May, there’s been speculation that Manchin is stepping down from the Senate to clear the way for a run at Biden’s job. In April, he refused to rule out standing in next year’s election, and his name is being mentioned as a potential third-party candidate — No Labels wants to offer Americans a choice that isn’t standing for a “partisan minority” — their code for Biden and Trump.

Now, six months later, Manchin still hasn’t ruled it out — and in fact, he’s getting closer to saying he does plan on a run. On November 15, he appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and discussed the issue with host Kristen Welker. After telling her he’d do anything to help his country he said, “You’re saying, ‘Does that mean you would consider it?’ Absolutely.” That’s a clear statement that he’s willing to run; the question is, will he?

Manchin himself says he needs to make sure voters actually want a non-partisan candidate — but he’s committed to doing that. He told Welker he’s determined to “mobilize that moderate, sensible, commonsense middle.” If he succeeds, the Democrats’ worst nightmare could come true, because a Manchin campaign is likely to take a lot more votes from them than it would from Trump.

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